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Old January 26 2014, 02:02 PM   #24
Rhubarbodendron
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Location: milky way, outer spiral arm, Sol 3
Re: If Nazi's had not been defeated space timeline reasonable?

as a matter of fact, I meant to refer to the Bush administration's spy satellite programme. It was a reply to the last sentecne of FPAlpha's post.
It's a great comfort that the American population (at least part of them) feels the same about such a scenario as we do.


I differ a bit with you on the second issue. I don't think extermination and slavery were the main issues. At least not from the start. They became a necessity only much later.
In order to understand the situation in Germany in the early 30s you have to take the historical background into consideration: according to the Versailles Treaty made immediately after WW1, Germany had to bear the full weight of the reparation payments (even though Austria had started the war and we were just forced by a contract to assist them). The victors of WW1 stripped Germany of allmost all factories. Literally! They disassembled them and reassembled them in their own countries.
With their economy having been totally destroyed and the last cent pulled from their pockets, the people naturally would follow anyone who tolerably convincingly promised them a better life.


[warning: use of direct speech in the following does NOT express my views. My personal opinion is in fact quite different. But this way it's easier to show you how people thought]

It's quite revealing that WW2 started with an invasion in Poland: they had rich soils and huge wheat fields. Conquering them meant having bread.
However, an army and a supply system requires money. Where to get that? You can't take it from your fellows - they'd kill you. You need a scapegoat. Rich and foreign, preferably. That's how the Jews got into focus. Since the middle ages they had been forbidden craftsmanship. So they became merchants and money lenders (the latter being a profession the Church explicitly forbid to Christians). 6 or 7 generations later, their families had naturally amassed some wealth (if they had survived previous genocides of which there were galore).
Nobody likes a rich banker. And if he has a funny religion and generally doesn't quite fit in he makes a wonderful scapegoat. And if the Jew is no banker but a shop owner, you can still give his business to one of your followers. One content voter more plus you show that you care for your people. Nice advertizing for free.

That's how it started. Killing gipsies was the next logical step: not fitting in, not being socially accepted, considered scum. Let's get rid of them. And while we are at it, how about all these scary and weird insane people? They are an eyesore and a disgrace. Everybody wants so much not to see them. But keeping them in asylums is pretty expensive in the long run. Let's cut the costs and just put them all to sleep. It's so much more humane as well. After all, what kind of a life would they have?

And at some point along this development it all got out of hand. More money was needed for more weapons. That required more conquering. POWs were made but they were expensive to feed. Best put them to work and earn their living. On second thought, cancel the living - we'll get new ones in the next battle.
And once the victories ended and the defeats started there was the population to be kept under control. The intelligent ones had to be silenced and the stupid ones kept busy.
At that point they stood with their backs to the wall and knew it. It was just a matter of keeping face from then on, and to do as much damage to the enemies as possible. The inmates of the concentration camps were to be collected and destroyed. There were few trains and so they had to walk. Hundreds of miles. The death marches they called them, and that they were. It is rumoured that more people died then than in the camps (I am not sure if that's true - there are no documents from that time, only a handfull of secretly made photos).
That - only a few weeks before the capitulation - was the point when the majority of the population learned the truth about the concentration camps. Before that there had been rumours but I would like to give at least the more simpleminded villagers the benefit of the doubt. In my opinion the vast majority could have known with a little effort but was simply not interested in finding out.
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